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[June 08, 2014]
New in tech this week
(Guardian Web Via Acquire Media NewsEdge) • Health and home on your phone. Apple unveiled its plans for its iPhone software for the next year complete with Home and Health apps.
Apple's Home app promises to automate the house, remotely connecting lights, locks, TVs and washing machines, and make them all controllable via voice, thanks to Siri. Utter the words "it's time for bed, Siri" and it'll switch off all the lights and lock the door without you having to lift a finger.
Its Health app wants to be your personal physician in your pocket. Connecting to a plethora of sensors, fitness gadgets and medical devices, the app will collate your biometric data and connect straight to hospitals when a doctor's needed.
• Music in every room as easy as working the radio. That's the promise of Pure's new Bluetooth Caskeid, a wireless technology that fires audio around the home between Wi-Fi connected speakers. Stream music to one of them and the system handles the rest making sure your whole house is tunefully in sync.
• Fly round the world powered just by the sun. That's the dream of Solar Impulse 2 – a solar-powered plane that took its inaugural flight this week. The plane took off from Payerne in Switzerland and safely returned two hours later. With a wingspan of 72m, which is larger than a Boeing 747 jet, it weighs just 2.3 tonnes with four electric motors powered by solar panels across the wings. More testing is needed, but Solar Impulse 2 should circumnavigate the globe on just sunlight in 2015.
• Dyson invented smartglasses 10 years before Google. The British vacuum company revealed designs for a pair of smartglasses designed in 2001 and had a working prototype in 2003, a decade before Google had its Glass. The Dyson "Halo" smartglasses were revealed as one of three shelved projects for the company's 21st birthday. Dyson also designed a filtration system for diesel engines, based on its cyclone technology, and a hydrogen fuel cell, but decided not to release them to the public.
(c) 2014 Guardian Newspapers Limited.
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